Ames Free Library

"Where the Community Connects"

LIBRARY OPEN FOR HOLDS PICKUP, QUICK BROWSING, AND COMPUTER USE!

Current hours: Monday - Wednesday & Friday - Saturday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Thursday 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.

  • Visits are limited to a maximum of 45 minutes per person.
  • Total occupancy in the building is limited to 10 visitors at any given time, so short waits outside may be necessary.
  • Please go here for more information on what services are currently available.
  • Email us at info@amesfreelibrary.org, or call 508-238-2000.
  • Check out our list of online programs here!

Stress-Free Fridays

Need to de-stress? We've got weekly suggestions to help you unwind. 

All of these ideas are curated and brought to you by Megan Tully!

 

Friday, October 23, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

How Mantras Calm Your Mind

If guided meditation isn’t easing your stress try giving mantras a try. As this article explains, “Mantras are short repeated words or sayings that can be used as a form of relaxation or meditation.” Think of The Little Engine that Could, chugging up the mountain: I think I can. I think I can. I think I can. Find a word or phrase that speaks to you (or borrow from poet Maggie Smith) and start using your mantra today!


Friday, October 16, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Guided Imagery from John Hopkins All Children’s Hospital

Take a few minutes to relax with this guided imagery meditation. Press play, close your eyes, and let the narrator take you on a peaceful journey.


Friday, October 9, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

9 Interesting Ways Napping Can Make Your Life Better

Whether you’re working from home, heading to the office, or balancing a hybrid (along with everything else!) you undoubtedly have days that leave you feeling sluggish. Maybe it’s time to take a nap! Check out this Psychology Today article that highlights some of the benefits of napping, including reducing stress and elevating your mood.


Friday, October 2, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Ames Free Library Readers’ Advisory Form

Cooler weather is on the way and it’s the perfect time to curl up with a great book. We know that sometimes picking your next read can be a daunting task. There are just so many to choose from! Let your AFL librarians do the hard work of choosing for you. You let us know what type of books you enjoy reading - and even your hobbies or favorite TV shows - and we’ll recommend three books for you. Give it a try today!


Friday, September 25, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Living a More Thankful Life: 30 Days of Gratitude

There are countless positive effects of gratitude from improved sleep to stress relief. This 30-day series from Creativebug provides prompts and creative exercises on different ways to practice gratitude. Try one or try them all! And don’t forget to check out the other great tutorials on Creativebug - they’re all free with your library card!


Friday, September 11, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

12 Mind-Body-Spirit Practices to Conquer Anxiety

This article by psychologist Seth J. Gillihan offers a variety of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) methods for combating stress and anxiety. Gillihan explores 12 common anxiety related difficulties and offers suggestions on how to deal with them.


Friday, September 4, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

30 Reasons To Do a Digital Detox

Feeling like a Zoom zombie? Are all your notifications giving you nightmares? It might be time for a digital detox! Taking a break from the hyperconnected world is a great way to relax. This article outlines some of the reasons and benefits of disconnecting from our devices. Not sure where to start? The author also has a piece on how to do a digital detox.


Friday, August 28, 2020

Need to de-stress? We’ve got weekly suggestions to help you unwind.

This week’s suggested resource is:

The Breathing Technique a Navy SEAL Uses to Stay Calm and Focused

This article from Mark Devine, a retired Navy SEAL and yoga teacher, focuses on a technique he refers to as “box breathing.” Based on yoga principles of balanced breathing, this 4-4-4-4 method is a quick way to bring some calm back in to your day.


Stress-Free Fridays, August 21, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

The Science of Kindness

Have you ever noticed that warm, fuzzy feeling you get when you do something kind for someone else? It turns out there’s some science behind that! This article from Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles highlights studies showing the positive health benefits of acts of kindness.


Stress-Free Fridays, August 14, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

How Can Audio Books Boost Mental Health? We're All Ears!

We may be biased, but we think audiobooks are great! This article from Psychology Today highlights 10 ways listening to an audiobook can help your mental well being. Check out audiobooks available on OverDrive, Hoopla, or in our catalog and start listening today!


Stress-Free Fridays, August 7, 2020

This week’s suggested resources are:

40 Ways to Relax in 5 Minutes or Less

Need to unwind in a flash? Give one of these quick ideas a try!


Stress-Free Fridays, July 31, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Ambient Mixer

Getting tired of the same old background noise in your house? Check out the thousands of “audio atmospheres” available on Ambient Mixer. You’ll find a wide variety of mixes to listen to, from the traditional soothing sounds like ocean waves and rainstorms to those themed on your favorite books, TV shows, movies, and more? Close your eyes, listen, and escape to Rivendell, Hogwarts, and countless places in between.


Stress-Free Fridays, July 24, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

The Ultimate Yoga Pose for Relaxation

This short video walks you through how to perform a simple yoga pose to aid in relaxation.


Stress-Free Fridays, July 17, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

13 Meditation Apps to Help You Fight Anxiety and Stress

If you feel like you need some guidance on where to get started with meditation or mindfulness, look no further than this list of apps compiled by PCMag. The list includes short reviews on a variety of apps available on both Apple and Android devices.


Stress-Free Fridays, July 10, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Fun with Fractals

This Psychology Today article explores how fractals can make you feel happier!


Stress-Free Fridays, June 26, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Learn about this relaxation technique with a step by step guide from the University of Michigan.


Stress-Free Fridays, June 19, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

How Does Reading Measure Up?

This resource from the Provincial and Territorial Library Associations of Canada highlights some of the many benefits of reading. Did you know that reading for just a few minutes a day has been shown to be 300% more effective at reducing stress levels than going for a walk?!

Ready to escape and unwind with a great book? Request a title or two through our curbside pickup service or download a title from home. For some added fun, keep track of your reading with our summer reading program!


Stress-Free Fridays, June 12, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Forest Bathing

Don’t worry, we’re not asking you to take a bath out in the woods! As this NPR article explains, forest bathing is the rough translation of a Japanese term, Shinrin-yoku. It is a practice of spending time in nature and using all of your senses to observe and experience your surroundings. Check out the article to learn more and to find links to additional resources.


Stress-Free Fridays, June 5, 2020

This week's suggested resource is:

Benefits of Dance: 8 Benefits for Adults and Kids

Tired of feeling cooped up, but even more tired of taking walks around the neighborhood? Dance it out! Dance has a variety of physical, mental, and emotional health benefits. This article from Healthline outlines some of these benefits and highlights specific benefits related to certain types of dancing. So this weekend, try out a dance class or routine on YouTube or just put on your favorite songs and turn your living room into a dance floor!

 

Stress-Free Fridays, May 29, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

5 Simple Exercises

“If stress is raising your tension level and taking a toll on your peace of mind, gentle mind/body exercises may help you relax.” This may sound like something written for life in the age of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it is actually the opening sentence to an article from a 2007 issue of the magazine Mind, Mood, & Memory! Check out the article for some simple exercises modified from yoga and tai chi practices.


Stress-Free Fridays, May 22, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Gratitude Journaling

Research suggests that a regular gratitude journaling practice can result in a number of positive health impacts including improved mood and better sleep. Greater Good in Action, part of the University of California at Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, walks you through how to begin and why you should give gratitude journaling a try.

 

Stress-Free Fridays, May 15, 2020

This week’s suggested resources are:

Smithsonian Digital Volunteers and Zooniverse

Tired of jigsaw puzzles? Out of art and craft supplies? Try unwinding and have some fun as a citizen scholar! Both Smithsonian Digital Volunteers and Zooniverse allow you to assist researchers with important projects. Try your hand at transcribing historical documents, tagging digital images for classification, and more.

 

Stress-Free Fridays, May 8, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Laughter Yoga

As the old adage goes, “laughter is the best medicine.” Laughter Yoga combines deep breathing and laughter exercises to get you moving and smiling. In this video, join Certified Laughter Yoga Teacher Celeste Greene for a short, but impactful “workout.”

 

Stress-Free Fridays, May 1, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Zentangle

A favorite among Ames Free Library staff and patrons, Zentangle is a great way to relax and make something beautiful at the same time. Check out the official Zentangle website for tutorials and resources. Want more? Search “Zentangle” on Hoopla for a variety of guides.


Stress-Free Fridays, April 24, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

5 Shaolin Qi Gong Breath Exercises

Relax, breathe deep, & strengthen your lungs with these traditional Chinese exercises.


Stress-Free Fridays, April 17, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Ambient Mixer

Getting tired of the same old background noise in your house? Check out the thousands of “audio atmospheres” available on Ambient Mixer. You’ll find a wide variety of mixes to listen to, from the traditional soothing sounds like ocean waves and rainstorms to those themed on your favorite books, TV shows, movies, and more? Close your eyes, listen, and escape to Rivendell, Hogwarts, and countless places in between.


Stress-Free Fridays, April 10, 2020

This week’s suggested resource is:

Cosmic Kids Yoga

Join instructor Jaime “for yoga, stories, and fun” on Cosmic Yoga. While Jaime’s videos are designed with a younger audience in mind, they are fun for the whole family!


Stress-Free Fridays, April 3, 2020

This week's suggested resource is:

 
This is the adult coloring trend at its most sophisticated! Put on your pearls, grab a glass of wine, and get ready to color-in art from some of the finest institutions around the world, such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the New York Botanical Garden, and the New York Public Library.
 

Stress-Free Fridays, March 27, 2020
 
This week's suggested resource is:

Live Jelly Cam - Monterey Bay Aquarium

Take a few minutes to watch the jellyfish at the Monterey Bay Aquarium and let them teach you to “go with the flow.”


Stress-Free Fridays, March 20, 2020
 
This week's suggested resource is:

Silk Interactive Generative Art

Use symmetry to draw pictures! It's a great way to spend a relaxing 10-15 minutes, or whenever you need a break.

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